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light me up (i'll keep you warm)

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Jimin’s life is a mess.

He himself is also a mess.

He’s learned to accept it.

His teacher is still trying to make peace with it.

There are very few days when Jimin doesn’t run into this class last minute, sweaty and disheveled from running across the damn quad from the dance studios after his modern class. It’s a fifteen minute walk that Jimin somehow manages to do in eight minutes because this professor will lock him out of the room if he’s late too many times in a row. Fifteen to eight. That’s impressive, if you ask him. And does he get any pats on the back for sacrificing his health for the sake of his education? No.

He just gets the stink eye from Professor Park and a seat at the front of the room.

Today, though.

He’s tired. He’s off his game. It took him ten minutes. Park is literally closing the door as Jimin turns the corner and enters the hallways and even though they fucking make eye contact, the bastard isn’t even holding the door for him.

Jimin does know if he’s ever sprinted this fast in his whole life.

He slides through the crack in the door at the last minutes, so close that he drags his sweaty chest all over his teacher’s arm, and his messenger bag gets a little stuck but nothing can stop him because he’s a man on a mission.

His entire lecture hall is staring at him as he stumbles into the room, but Jimin just brushes himself off and takes that damned seat in the corner front, right in front of the professor’s desk, and carefully arranges his note taking tools out on the desk.

“I’d give that landing a solid seven out of ten,” Seokjin offers casually, opening his laptop and bringing up his document full of notes and also a window for some online shop that seems to exclusively sell Mario themed clothing items. “I took a point off for grazing the professor.”

“Shouldn’t that get me bonus?” Jimin asks without skipping a beat. “He deserves it. I hope he looks at the sweat stain and weeps over the misfortunes he’s wrought.”

Professor Park clears his throat and starts the class. Among the sound of students rifling through papers and clicking pens, Jimin hears Seokjin swallowing a laugh and he smiles to himself.

It takes approximately ten minutes of Park talking about grammar for Seokjin to lose interest in paying attention to the class when Jimin’s misfortunes are so much more interesting. “How’s the roommate?” He doesn’t skip a beat, hands still typing out notes (or searching for fashionable sweaters online, who knows).

Jimin grimaces. “Worse.” He snaps the lead off of his pencil and brushes it aside with a huff before continuing to write.

Seokjin’s perfect eyebrows shoot up. “Worse?” He’s incredulous, and he should be, because honestly? Taehyung is a mess.

“He started listening to Taylor Swift last night.”

“Worse,” Seokjin agrees with a grimace. “Do you think he’ll get over it soon?” He’s looking at a Mario figurine now. Jimin would much rather be doing that than taking notes on grammar.

“Couldn’t tell you.” He finishes writing down something Park just said before he continues, rolling his eyes. “It’d be helpful if I knew why they even broke up.” Jimin squints to see the power point. He forgot to wear his glasses today but he thinks Park might also have a vendetta against hipsters so maybe it will help him in the long run. “I don’t know if Tae knows either. He was…” His pencil pauses. He swallows. “Shocked.”

Jimin remembers the look on Taehyung’s face that night. Remembers Taehyung carefully shutting the door, no loud greeting, no asking about Jimin’s day. Jimin had turned around from his computer to Taehyung’s face held carefully blank. To see him standing in front of the closed door, unmoving, breathing deeply, eyes down and focused on something far away, trying to gather his thoughts.

It was a different Taehyung than the one who had left an hour before, a Taehyung that Jimin rarely sees.

He let Taehyung have a moment, stayed still and silent, and when Taehyung finally took a deep breath, in through his nose and out through his mouth, Jimin felt a strange sort of settled dread.

“Hoseok broke up with me.”

Everyone was shocked, honestly, because Taehyung and Hoseok were a happy couple, the happiest, better together, every good cliche perched nice atop a healthy and loving relationship. And Jimin was the Best Friend. He heard about everything, good and bad, and there wasn’t anything there that seemed like a warning sign. There was no warning.

It just ended.

Taehyung is still reeling.

Jimin is just mad.

“I hope Hoseok is happy,” Jimin tells Seokjin primly, with enough bitterness that his whisper carries a little more than he’d anticipated. Park shoots him a warning glare. Jimin tries to look like an angel.

Seokjin snorts.

It's another minute or two before Seokjin replies. "He's not."

"What?" asks Jimin, brain on the lecture, tapping his pencil against his mouth as he tries to understand what the teacher is writing on the board.

Seokjin moves a pair of socks into his shopping cart. "Hoseok isn't happy."

Jimin sniffs. "Good."

"Harsh," Seokjin says, mostly disinterested.

"If he's unhappy and Taehyung is unhappy and neither of them knows why then he's a fucking idiot, isn't he?" Jimin rattles off coldly.

"Who knew you were such an ice princess?" Seokjin sounds delighted.

Jimin raises an eyebrow and purses his lips as he reads the power point. "Queen, actually." He rolls his eyes again. "All I'm saying is that communication is important and if Hoseok has a reason then please, share it with the class. We're all dying to know."

Seokjin is trying to hide a smile by sucking on his teeth as he type down something that Park says before looking at several different styles of Mario hat. "Maybe Hoseok has a reason and he knows that it's not enough for Taehyung and that's why he hasn't said anything."

In Jimin's opinion, that's even shittier than breaking up with someone out of the blue, but he doesn't get a chance to tell that to Seokjin.

"Park Jimin."

Jimin looks wide eyed at the professor, innocent. "Yessir?"

Professor Park is frowning at him, and the class is looking at him. He can feel the eyes of the 20 people who are actually paying attention boring into the back of his head. "I'm sure that whatever Mister Kim is saying is fascinating, but please pay more attention to the class you're paying to attend."

Jimin smiles pleasantly. "Of course, sir."

Seokjin is snickering out loud and Professor Park doesn't even spare him a glance.

"I hate him," Jimin whispers, still smiling.

"He hates you," Seokjin says.

"As long as I survive this damn class, I couldn't care less," he says sweetly under his breath.

"How does anyone trust you at all?"

"My grandma says I'm cute as a button, so that's probably it," Jimin tells him, doodling an unflattering rendition of their teacher in the margins of his notebook.

"I'm cuter than you are." Seokjin bats his eyelashes to prove a point. Professor Park doesn't notice and Jimin is bitter.

He looks at Seokjin, grinning. "Must be because I'm not an asshole about it, then."

"I thought that was your type," Seokjin remarks casually, looking at Jimin knowingly out of the corner of his eye while he pretends to take notes. Jimin knows exactly where this is going and his whole body is screaming for him to escape. "Cute assholes."

Jimin blushes, grin dropping off of his face in record time. "I don't know what you're talking about," he says dismissively. He fixes the angle of his notebook so that it's perpendicular to the edge of the desk. He does not look at Seokjin.

“Wow, I think I know someone who fits that type exactly.”

Jimin shoots and involuntary glance over his shoulder towards the back of the room, catches a glimpse of bleached hair and overgrown roots and tapping fingers, and the second he does, he knows that Seokjin has won. Jimin refuses to accept that. “Types are a fallible construct and I do not believe in them.”

Which is true, because if you only date one sort of person than that’s pretty limiting and also people are multifaceted, thank you very much. But also. Yeah. Maybe Jimin likes the sort of people who are both sharp and soft, mostly soft, and maybe he likes it when he has to dig for it, and yeah.

Maybe Min Yoongi is that type.

Jimin saw him bitch out some freshman for harassing the dog that likes to hang out around the business building. He saw Yoongi bend down and give the dog half of his sandwich.

Min Yoongi is exactly his type.

If he didn’t think the professor would personally kick him out of class, he would bang his head against the desk. This whole thing is a disaster.

Because while yes, Jimin can admit that he might be interested in possibly developing a crush on this soft sharp human, and he has an in through both Seokjin and his friend Namjoon, Jimin has labelled it pointless to develop said crush because everyone on campus knows Min Yoongi and everyone loves him.

A lot.

The number of suitors Yoongi has is obscene. Every girl has had a crush on his at some point, several boys have had sexual awakenings, and honestly? Jimin is gay. He’s very, very gay. He didn’t stand a chance.

Yoongi is on student government. He tutors at the Learning Center. He works at the radio station. He DJ’s on the weekends. If you want to know anything about audio engineering, he’s the one you ask. If you want to get into any club off campus, he’s the one you see.

And yet, Jimin doesn’t know if he’s ever seen someone as confused to receive a confession letter in his life.

Hopeless.

But.

If Jimin sneaks a look every once in awhile, can you blame him?

It’s fine, though. It’s not like Jimin is ever going to talk to him anyway. It doesn’t matter that Yoongi is friends with Seokjin or Namjoon, because Yoongi is busy and Jimin isn’t going to pursue anything, so this is fine. A little bit of pining that will fade out once the semester is over and Jimin doesn’t have the opportunity to glance back at Min Yoongi in class.

It doesn’t matter.

Seokjin tsks. “You’re hopeless.”

Jimin sighs. “Yeah.”

Hopeless.

 


 

Jimin is a good friend.

He’s put up with Taehyung through thick and thin. Right now, it’s about as thin as tissue paper, but Jimin is still with him. Going to the grocery store when Taehyung is too overcome with emotion to go pick up basic necessities. Reminding Taehyung to shower at least every other day. He even touched Taehyung’s dirty underwear once when it somehow managed to find itself on the ceiling fan.

He understands how hard it is going through a breakup. He’s been through a few of his own.

But this is getting ridiculous.

“Taehyung,” Jimin says, banging his head back on the door. The floor is not comfortable to sit on but he makes the most of it. “Come out of the bathroom.”

“No.”

“Taehyung,” Jimin whines full-force. “I haven’t peed in hours, please come out.”  He needs a shower, too, the rehearsal sweat long cooled off and making him feel about as good as he looks. Which is not very.

He thinks he hears a sniffle. “I’m an emotional wreck.”

Jimin bangs his head against the door again. “I know.” He reaches up and jiggles the door handle but it’s, surprise, still locked and might as well be impenetrable unless he wants to pay the fine to get the door fixed once he breaks it down out of adrenaline and desperation to get a shower. “Taehyung.”

No answer.

“TaeTae, you know I support you, yeah?”

Another sniffle.

“This is ridiculous.”

“Don’t be mean to me, I’m delicate.”

Jimin runs a hand down his face. “Can you be delicate and emotional while I am in the shower?”

Taehyung is, apparently, too deep in his turmoil to bless Jimin with a response.

He pulls out the big guns. “I’ll buy you that strawberry ice cream you like if you let me use the toilet for two minutes.”

“Hoseok bought me ice cream once.” Taehyung sighs wistfully, choked up with emotion and nostalgia when Jimin knows for a fact this happened less than three weeks ago. Jimin knows this because he is the one who had to physically pry the empty ice cream carton out of Taehyung’s hands when he went on his comfort food binge and ate the whole thing in one sitting while crying into it and waxing poetic about the fallacies of love.

Taehyung has always been dramatic, but heartbroken isn’t good on him.

Jimin wants to pick up the pieces and superglue them back together with hugs and a cathartic screening of The Notebook but 1) he kind of hates The Notebook and 2) he can’t give Taehyung a hug right now.

Because he’s currently locked himself into the fucking bathroom.

“Kim Taehyung, I am two seconds and a pair of soiled underwear away from taking all of your beverages out of the refrigerator and putting them in the sun so they get really hot and leaving them there,” Jimin threatens, because it’s the best he can think of when his bladder is about to burst.

Taehyung whines. “I hate that.”

“I know.”

The lock clicks.

Jimin slinks in.

Taehyung looks like a mess, honestly, all wild hair and red eyes, curled up in the bathtub with his knees hiked up to his chest, and Jimin decides that a shower can wait.

Pissing cannot.

But he’ll remain sweaty for Taehyung.

“What happened?” he asks softly, keeping his face as neutral as possible while washing his hands. He sees Taehyung look up at him in the mirror, his long fingers splayed out on his knees playing fluttery rhythms the way he only does when he has so many words that he isn’t sure which ones to says.

“I saw Hoseok on campus today,” Taehyung says eventually.

Jimin wipes his hands on his pants and goes to sit in the opposite side of the tub. Their feet overlap. It’s familiar. “Yeah?”

“He was with that…” Taehyung sighs. “That Jungkook guy. The handsome one. They were.” Taehyung grimaces. “They were really. Touchy. And I kind of hated it.” He tugs at his hair. He dyed it blond the other day, a nice soft color, in a fit of spontaneity that Jimin just chalks up to needing a distraction.  “Am I allowed to hate it?”

Jimin makes a sympathetic noise in the back of his throat. “You guys broke up really recently. I’d be surprised if you didn’t hate it.” He tries to pet Taehyung with his toes.

“It just sucks.” Taehyung pouts. He rests his chin on his knees. “They looked nice together.”

“You guys looked nice, too.” Jimin kicks his roommate a little. “They aren’t even together.”

“Do we know that?” Taehyung sighs.

It’s a little unnerving to see Taehyung so down. “We would know,” Jimin says, partially to make Taehyung feel better and partially because they would. Jimin’s been keeping tabs on Hoseok for weeks now.

It doesn’t seem to make much of a difference.

“What am I going to do if he moves on that fast?” Taehyung asks aloud. “We didn’t even date that long. Why am I so upset?”

The answer, simply, is that Taehyung really, really liked him. Likes. And up until a month or so ago, Jimin would have been inclined to say the feeling was mutual.

“I don’t…” Taehyung takes a deep breath that is suspiciously shuddery. Jimin puts his hand over Taehyung’s and Taehyung rests his cheek against it. “I don’t even know why we broke up.”

“It’ll be okay.” Jimin can’t think of anything else to say.

Taehyung smiles a little, the corner of his mouth turning up just the slightest bit. “I know.” He sighs again. Jimin is tired of Taehyung sounding so sad. “It’s just a matter of when.”

Not now. “Soon.” He reaches out his other hand and rests it gently on Taehyung’s head. “I’ll fight for your honor.”

Taehyung laughs a little. Jimin feels the puff of air on his skin and gets a strange sort of reassurance. “Fight for me, Jiminie. Go give him a piece of your mind.”

“Fisticuffs.”

“Even better.”

Jimin squeezes his friend’s fingers. Taehyung sighs deeply again.

If Jimin has to fight, then he will.

He may look like shit and want to sleep for 23 hours but dammit, if he has to engage in a fist fight to make Taehyung happy again, then he will.

So Jimin lets Taehyung lean against him for a little longer, and then goes out and makes him hot chocolate and delivers it to his bathtub, and then he puts on his jacket and smacks his face a little bit to prepare himself and marches out the door ready to knock Hoseok upside the head.

 


 

It’s not a long walk to Hoseok’s apartment. Jimin has only been there twice. Once to drop off Taehyung on his way to visit his parents, and once to pick up the cardboard box of Taehyung’s things three days after the two of them broke up.

(The box is sitting unpacked in Taehyung’s closet, like even just taking back his things reminds him too much of Hoseok still.)

(Hoseok never came to pick up his things.)

So Jimin makes his way there quickly, hands shoved in the pockets of his too big jacket and his eyes watering a little bit in the chill but honestly, he doesn’t have anyone to impress. He just needs to give Hoseok a piece of his mind.

Hoseok deserves the way that Jimin smells like 3 hours of rehearsal and the Mexican food he ate for lunch.

All Jimin thinks about on his walk is the way that Taehyung hasn’t been Taehyung, the look on his face when he opens the closet and sees that damn cardboard box and the way he was curled up in the bathtub and the way that Jimin wakes up in the middle of the night and goes into the living room and sees Taehyung sitting on the floor with all of the movies that Hoseok bought him laying out in front of him and the way Taehyung will slowly pick one and start to watch it and pretend like he’s paying attention instead of crying.

It’s awful.

They dated for six months, six good months, which isn’t the longest relationship either of them have ever had but it’s also not the shortest and it’s definitely enough time to get attached. They were attached. Very attached.

Jimin refuses to believe that it was one sided.

To think that would be a disservice to Hoseok.

So then why is Hoseok such a goddamn idiot?

He huffs, angry and small and cold and in need of a shower but mostly angry and in demand of answers.

What a convenient headspace to be in while making his way into the apartment building and up the steps to wait outside of Hoseok’s door.

He knocks.

It’s aggressive.

He’s already taking a deep breath when he hears someone twisting the doorknob. “Jung Hoseok, I have a bone to pick with you, you absolute asshole,” he starts.

It is not Jung Hoseok.

Definitely not.

It is definitely. Not.

Okay.

Min Yoongi.

Jimin coughs awkwardly into his fist. “Hello,” he finishes.

Yoongi looks confused and uncomfortable, standing completely still except for his eyes, which are looking every direction like he’s trying to figure out where to go from here. “Are you…” His voice is really deep. This might be the first time he’s ever said something to Jimin. “...okay?”

Are you okay?

Perfect.

Jimin shoves his hands firmly into his pockets, stiff as a board and now more embarrassed than angry. “Fine,” he says sharply, face bright red.

The other man tilts his head to the side, just a little. He needs a haircut, blond hair almost in his eyes. Not that Jimin is looking. “Can I help you?”

“I think I.” His voice cracks. It’s fine. “I think I might have remembered the wrong apartment number.”

Yoongi is still standing with his hand on the doorknob in exactly the same position he was in when Jimin starting yelling at him without even a proper introduction. His shoulders are tense, but Jimin thinks there might be a smile tugging at the corners of his mouth. “I’m Hoseok’s roommate,” he offers. “If that...makes you feel any better.”

“Ah.” Not really.

They stand there staring at each other.

Jimin takes a deep breath. “Is he here?”

“Oh, yeah,” Yoongi says, suddenly jerking back to reality like how awkward the past three minutes have been has sent him into a stupor. “Are you looking for him?”

“Yep,” Jimin replies.

Yoongi squints at him. “Taehyung?”

“Jimin,” he answers, raising an eyebrow. “I’m here to roast your roommate.”

“Finally, I don’t have to do it by myself.” Yoongi’s face is carefully deadpan, but Jimin finds himself fighting of a smile. “He’s in the living room.”

Yoongi stands aside.

Jimin remembers that he’s angry and doesn’t ask permission before stomping in.

“You have a visitor,” Yoongi calls out into the apartment, a foot or two behind Jimin.

“I’m not really in the mood,” says someone. Jimin recognizes the voice as Hoseok’s, a little thinner and a little more miserable and Jimin is both sad and satisfied at the same time.

“Yeah, well.” Jimin has to work his anger back up to a boil but he’s still huffy as hell.

Jimin sees the back of someone’s head over the top of the couch, and at the sound of his voice, Hoseok jerks up and cranes his neck around to see Jimin entering the room behind Yoongi. "Oh, uh." He stands up awkwardly, brushing himself off for no reason. His hair looks greasy and his shirt has toothpaste on it and he's not wearing pants.

"I'm here to yell at you," Jimin says frankly, just to get rid of any starting questions.

Yoongi coughs behind him, but it sound suspiciously like a laugh.

"Oh." Hoseok looks likes he's at a loss.

"I need a minute," Jimin tells him after a moment.

"For..."

Jimin waves dismissively over his shoulder at Yoongi. "He threw me off and now I've gotta make myself mad again. One second." He holds up a fingers and thinks about Taehyung in the bathtub. Thinks about Taehyung in front of the television at night. Does not think about how awkward this is about to be.

Fuck it.

"Okay, I'm good now." He takes a deep breath. Hoseok looks vaguely terrified. "Are you ready?"

"Why not?" But Hoseok really sounds like he's not ready.

"I mean it when I say I'm about to yell at you." Jimin squints at him. He's not usually the sort to hit a man when he's down but something has to be done. The least he can do is make sure that Hoseok knows what's about to happen. "I need you to be prepared."

Yoongi shifts behind him, but it's not to leave, like Jimin expects. He just walks a few steps to lean against the walk. Jimin can see him out of the corner of his eye but he won't let that affect him when his blood is boiling again. He must use his anger for it's intended purpose.

Unfortunately, Jimin is a little too soft on a day to day basis to incite the sort of fear he would like to see in Hoseok’s eyes, but he did warn him, and beyond that it’s really not his fault.

So despite Hoseok not looking appropriately cowed, Jimin let’s his anger seep into his bones. His eyes narrow. His jaw clenches. He’s almost snarling. “What the fuck are you doing?”

Hoseok blinks. “I--”

“I’m sorry, do you want to talk now?” Jimin tasks, crossing his arms. He sounds condescending and he’s happy about it. “Because you’ve had Tae on radio silence for over a week now, so I think you’ve missed your chance.”

“Whoa.” It’s Yoongi, the sort of thing someone would say after they see something explode, but Jimin doesn’t have the patience to be embarrassed.

Hoseok’s mouth is hanging open.

Good. “Obviously there are things that I don’t know about your relationship,” Jimin starts again, even though there is probably very little Jimin doesn’t know, being the resident Best Friend. “And I only met you a few months ago, so I’m not going to go as far as to say that Taehyung was the best thing that’s ever happened to you, but you had a damn good thing going and as far as I can see, you’ve ruined it for no reason.” Jimin gestures wildly to the door he just walked in through, back towards Taehyung, sad and alone and watching terrible television to try to feel better. “He doesn’t even know why you broke up with him! You took him out for fucking frozen yogurt and casually told him you didn’t want to talk to him anymore? What is he supposed to do with that?”

There’s a second when Hoseok has to recollect himself from the shock of Park Jimin, resident marshmallow, yelling at him with unexpected aggression, but once he does, his mouth hardens into a firm line and Jimin is already calling bullshit on whatever he’s about to say. “What do you care?” he asks, and Jimin scoffs. “It’s not your relationship.”

Jimin looks down his nose at him, eyes cold. “It may not be my relationship, but Taehyung is my best friend, and he’s been fucked up for weeks! Because of you.” It comes out as more of a hiss, and Jimin knows that talking these things out with a cool head generally gets better results, but Hoseok needs a wake up call. He raises an eyebrow, chin jutting forward. “Did you think about that, Hoseok?” Jimin sees the way Hoseok somehow closes his face off even more. “I think you must have, because I know you really liked him, but I can tell you about it, if you want?”

The room is bizarrely quiet, tense. He knows that neither Yoongi nor Hoseok expected him to be this mad, much less verbalize it, but Jimin doesn’t play games when it comes to the people he loves.

Hoseok is waiting. He looks cowed enough, now.

Jimin did tell him to prepare himself.

He takes a deep breath, and it feels like he has the room in the palm of his hand and he doesn’t particularly like yelling but he’s glad to know that it’s effective. “I just left Taehyung on the couch with a pint of ice cream after coaxing him out of the bathtub where he was crying because he saw you and some random freshman being extra friendly in the quad.” He jabs his finger into Hoseok’s chest.

Hoseok doesn’t even seem to notice. “Jungkook?” He shakes his head. “Jungkook is just a friend.”

“So you’re saying Taehyung can’t be upset about it?”

“No, I--” Hoseok shakes his head. Jimin has never seen Hoseok quite so flustered. “Of course I’m not saying that.”

“What if Taehyung wasn’t upset at the thought of you talking to someone else?” Jimin asks, voice sweet. “If he was completely over you, how would you feel?”

“I’d be…” Hoseok sighs heavily, burdened and irritated. “I’d be upset.”

“Because you still like him.”

Hoseok huffs, hands in the air. “Of course I still like him!”

Jimin takes a step forward. “Then why?”

“We had to break up, Jimin.” Hoseok sounds like he believes it.

Hoseok is also an idiot.  “And why is that?” Jimin is less than impressed. Someone’s got to make Hoseok see that he’s an idiot and it’s definitely not going to be Kim Taehyung. Jimin is more than willing to pick up the slack for his best friend. He’s been doing it for years.

“That’s none of your business,” says Hoseok flatly.

Jimin pins him with a look so cold his mother would be impressed. “My best friend isn’t eating, barely sleeping, watching shitty dramas about fucking heartbreak, and listening to Adele’s Someone Like You on repeat.” Hoseok winces with each bullet. Jimin isn’t pulling punches. “I need to know.”

Hoseok rubs his eyes tiredly. “I’m graduating at the end of the semester, Jimin.”

Jimin waits but Hoseok isn’t saying anything else. “And?” he prompts.

Hoseok just shrugs.

Jimin squints at him. “That’s the dumbest shit I’ve ever heard?” He’s amazed.

Yoongi snorts.

Hoseok shoots his roommate a glare. “Okay, listen--”

“Okay, no.” Jimin holds up a finger and Hoseok’s mouth snaps shut. “That’s literally the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard?” He grimaces at Hoseok. “You guys have been dating for months already. Did you really not think it was going to last past this year?”

“I didn’t expect it to be anything,” Hoseok says, rolling his eyes, less because he’s annoyed and more because he doesn’t want to look at Jimin.

Yoongi snorts again.

Jimin stares at him for a moment. Another moment. “I’m calling bullshit.”

Hoseok raises an eyebrow at him. “I’ve noticed.”

“What did you expect, like, a fast burn or something?” Jimin is really trying to understand. He doesn’t give Hoseok time to reply but it doesn’t really matter because he doubts the answer will be satisfactory. “You took him on moonlight walks by the river and brought him chocolate bars on test days and watched The Notebook with him and actually liked it. Are you trying to tell me you’re not a romantic?”

Yoongi looks at Hoseok with new eyes. “You like T he Notebook ?”

“Not the time,” Hoseok snips.

“Did you just expect him to be like, a quick fuck or?” Jimin frowns. That doesn’t sound right.

Clearly it doesn’t sit well with Hoseok either. “No!” The corners of his mouth turn down. “Of course not!”

Jimin puts his hands on his hips. “Then did you really not expect it to go anywhere or are you just pissing yourself at the thought of trying to make it work once you’re not conveniently in the same area?”

Hoseok drinks that in for a moment, leaning back with a deep breath in through his nose, and Jimin knows he’s almost won. “That’s not it,” Hoseok says after a second.

“Then what?”

“I…” Hoseok sighs again. “I don’t want to hold him back from being happy or whatever.”

Jimin thinks about Taehyung crying into his ice cream. “Well, he’s unhappy now so I’d say you’re doing a pisspoor job of it.”

“What if he meets someone next year when I’m gone and doesn’t want to tell me? What if he doesn’t want the time commitment?” Hoseok sounds like he’s chewing over his thoughts.

Jimin looks at Hoseok carefully. “Did someone hurt you?” he asks aggressively.

Hoseok blinks in shock. “What?”

“Because I’ll fight them, too.”

He laughs, surprised. “Jimin. Please.”

Jimin’s blood is back down to an even temperature. “It’s a year, Hoseok,” he says slowly. “Not an eternity.” One year and then Taehyung will be graduating, too.

“A year sounds like a long time,” Hoseok admits.

“Yeah, well.” Jimin rolls his eyes. “It’s not. And I can tell you right now that Taehyung would be happier waiting that year for you than being kicked aside for no reason.”

Hoseok frowns. “I have a reason.”

“You don’t.”

“I--”

“You don’t,” Jimin reiterates, firm. “It may seem like you do, but you don’t. You’re just scared.”

It’s quiet again, but it’s less tense. Jimin can hear Hoseok thinking.

“If it fizzles, then it fizzles,” Jimin says tiredly. “But if it doesn’t, and it hasn’t, then all of this hurting is a waste of time.”

Hoseok is still frowning, still not looking at Jimin, but he looks like he heard.

Jimin shoves his hands in his pockets, looking at the ceiling. He’s embarrassed now, because he’s not so angry and Hoseok is a good guy and he just wants his friends to figure their shit out. “I don’t know, I just feel like Taehyung would rather be happy, you know?”

It’s a lame ending, especially considering the way Jimin marched all the way over here in the cold, but Hoseok lets out a soft sound, almost sad. “Yeah,” he says. More breath than word. And Jimin knows he gets it now.

“Then what are you waiting for?”

And Hoseok smiles just a little bit, and his shoulders straighten, and Jimin watches fondly as he makes his way to the door.

Until Hoseok moves to pass him and Jimin gets a good whiff.

He pulled on Hoseok’s t-shirt to stop him. “Shower first.”

“Seconded,” says Yoongi, and Jimin has almost forgotten he was standing there. “It’s also a little cold outside to just wear boxers but as always, I support you.”

Hoseok throws a decorative pillow at his roommate. “Fuck you.”

Yoongi catches it easily, unphased, and Hoseok runs into the bathroom.

Jimin’s work here is done.

“Now that I have, uh,” he clears his throat, “properly chastised your roommate, I think I should go.”

Yoongi throws the pillow to Jimin, who sets it gently on the couch. “Thanks.”

Jimin laughs, slightly strangled. The embarrassment is settling in again. “For the show?”

“That was...something.” Yoongi turns a little pink and Jimin wonders if he’s embarrassed, too, even though he can’t think of why. “But really, thanks for making him get his shit together.” Yoongi pauses, thinking, and Jimin let’s him take a moment. “You said you didn’t know Hoseok well enough to say Taehyung is the best thing that’s ever happened to him, but I know Hoseok...really well. And Taehyung really is.” He coughs awkwardly. “The best thing that’s happened to him, I mean. So.” Yoongi ruffles his bangs. “Thanks.”

They’re still standing stiffly in the living room, too far apart, too tense, but slowly Jimin smiles, and it feels like a real one. “My pleasure.” He walks past the other boy towards the door. “It was nice doing business with you.”

Yoongi smiles, too. It’s a nice smile. Jimin likes it a lot. “Likewise.”

Once Jimin starts struggling to put his boots back on his feet, he hears Yoongi mumble something. “Excuse me?”

“I said we should do it again sometime.”

Jimin laughs. “Hopefully I won’t need to shout Jung Hoseok into submission anytime soon, although I’m more than willing.” He grins. “I’m sorry to bother you, but it seems like I’ve worked my angry magic.”

“I’m impressed.” Yoongi tilts his head to the side. “Hoseok is stubborn.”

“And I’m vicious,” Jimin says. “We all saw who won.” He’s oddly proud. Taehyung owes him a meal for this.

Jimin barely has his hand on the door handle when he hears Yoongi again. “I’ll see you around?” Yoongi looks a little hopeful.

Honestly, Jimin wants to forget that this was his first point of contact with Min Yoongi, want to bury this memory very very deep, but it seems rude to say so. “Sure,” he says instead, non-committal.

The two of them have never talked a day in their lives before today. Jimin walks home with the intention of avoiding Min Yoongi forever and he doesn’t even think it’s going to be that difficult.

In a week or two he’ll forget about this whole thing, and so will Yoongi, and maybe then Jimin’s heart with stop thumping.

 


 

Surprisingly (or unsurprisingly, seeing as Jimin has accepted the fact that his life is a mess), avoiding Yoongi is not just difficult, it’s almost impossible.

It’s incredible, really, because up until his exchange with Hoseok, Jimin had just admired Yoongi from afar, the way any unlikely suitor does, and that was the end of it, but suddenly Jimin is seeing the older boy all over campus. Which would be fine, welcome even, because honestly? Yoongi is just really nice to look at and Jimin is thankful for some more polite ogling time.

But Yoongi keeps trying to talk to him.

In another life, this is Jimin’s dream, but all he can think about is the look on Yoongi’s face when he opened the door to Jimin yelling at him. His face heats up every time he thinks about it. He’s all about fighting for the honor of his friends, but he isn’t ready to face that particular consequence yet.

Yoongi comes up to talk to him, but Jimin somehow always finds an escape route.

Yoongi waves at him in the quad? Jimin ducks behind a high school tour group. Yoongi makes his way over to the table where Jimin is eating lunch with some friends? Jimin takes an impromptu bathroom break. Yoongi brings him coffee in the library?

Well.

Jimin is a college student to the bone.

Turning your back on coffee is a sin.

“You’re a hard man to pin down, Park Jimin.” Yoongi’s voice is soft and low. It fits in the library, Jimin thinks. Which is probably weird, but it’s fine. He’s been studying for hours, he’s allowed a weird thought or two. Yoongi slides the cup across the table and sits down.

He doesn’t look like he’s moving.

Jimin has been caught. He takes the coffee in defeat. Worth it. “Busy busy,” he says, taking a sip. “Dying is a full-time commitment.”

“Academic death, or?” Yoongi pulls a few small books and his laptop out of his backpack and Jimin stamps down the butterflies in his stomach.

“Also like, the eternal kind.” He runs his fingers along the too-small text in his book with a sigh. “Academia sucks the life out of everything, including Park Jimin.” He takes another drink of coffee. It’s something dark, warm, with a pump of something sweet that Jimin can’t place. “What is this?”

“My usual,” Yoongi says plainly, opening up his laptop. He’s wearing glasses and a cardigan and a big scarf and he looks like he needs to be hugged immediately. “I just got two since I didn’t know what you liked.”

“I like this,” Jimin says, because he does. “I’m not sure what I did to deserve coffee, though.”

Yoongi takes a second to look away from whatever is on his screen to pin Jimin with a withering look. “It’s more of a bribe.”

Immediately, Jimin knows what this is about, but he’s a little shit and can’t stop himself from teasing anyway. “What, do you want my homework? The deed to my house? My hand in marriage?”

Yoongi looks unimpressed. “Your company will do.” His fingers click clack on the keyboard and Jimin’s heart flutters.

He stamps that down too. “I’m pretty good company when I’m not yelling.”

“To be determined.” Click clack.

Jimin pouts cutely, but Yoongi doesn’t see. Jimin doesn’t really mind. “Good enough company for you to buy me coffee in order to woo me.”

“I figured you were embarrassed and I wanted you to not be.” He says it simply.

It takes a lot of effort not to swallow the hot coffee too fast. “I’m not embarrassed.”

“Seokjin saw you pacing in the bathroom for five minutes the last time I went to say hi to you in the cafeteria.”

“Seokjin is a snitch,” Jimin says like it’s a curse. “I don’t know why I put up with him.”

Yoongi looks at him, face flat, but Jimin thinks he sees a secret little smile playing right there at the corner of his mouth. “Does this make me your favorite?

Jimin’s mouth goes a little dry. “Taehyung will always be my favorite.”

“I bought you coffee.”

“Coffee only gets you second place, and it’s a shaky position.” Are they flirting? Jimin is still too embarrassed for this to be flirting. It’s fine. He’s fine.

Min Yoongi is possibly flirting with him and he’s fine.

“Who is my biggest competition?” There’s something reassuring about the way that yoongi is dividing his attention between Jimin and his books. Jimin doesn’t feel overly scrutinized. It’s casual. Jimin can do casual. He’s good at casual.

If he can forget that Yoongi is exactly his type and also horrendously out of his league, Jimin can do casual.

He swallows. “Probably Namjoon.”

Yoongi looks up. “Kim Namjoon? The philosophy major?”

“He’s only a minor,” Jimin said. He’s not surprised Yoongi knows him. They seem like they’d get along. “He’s just an engineering major now.” He doesn’t know why Namjoon had felt the need to get a double major in engineering and philosophy, but Jimin doesn’t ask questions.

Yoongi snorts. “We’ll see how long that lasts. He takes too many music classes to be an engineering major.”

Jimin sniffs. “I’m sure engineers can be talented musicians, too.”

“Fair.” Yoongi rifles through his book. Jimin tries not to pay too much attention to Yoongi’s hands.

Good hands.

Jimin takes a long drink.

“He’s geared up to graduate with a double major in engineering and music composition, but I’m not sure if his parents will be happy,” he says, just to keep conversation going. Funny. He’s been avoiding Yoongi for days and now he can’t shut up.

Crushes are fickle beasts.

“I know that life,” Yoongi answers. “The engineering degree will soften the blow, I’m sure.”

“Not sure it would be worth the work load just to make them less snippy at family dinners, but,” Jimin shrugs.

Yoongi raises an eyebrow and it’s the hottest thing Jimin has ever seen. “Your family isn’t supportive?”

“Not exactly.” His parents are great, pretty much about everything, but his extended family? Forget it. “They’re just business people,” he says, like this explains everything. They’re practical. The arts are frivolous. Or something.

“What’s your major?”

It’s an innocent question, normal, and a good reminder that Jimin knows all the small talk tidbits about Yoongi’s entire life and Yoongi met Jimin for the first time when Jimin went on a rampage in his apartment. He knows Yoongi’s major is music composition and production. He knows that Yoongi took a year off after high school to work. He knows that Yoongi is something two steps shy of a prodigy and he knows that Yoongi works hard for it.

Jimin smiles, because at least now he doesn’t have to worry about making a good impression, and says, “dance.”

“I see it.”

Jimin bites his lip. “Is it my impeccable grace and balance?”

Yoongi glances at him over the rim on his glasses. “Sure.”

“I’ve got those dancer collarbones.” Jimin says it without thinking.

It’s one of those things that dance majors say that makes sense to nobody else. Yoongi pauses in his typing and looks at Jimin, somewhat confused. “What does that mean?” Jimin’s shirt has a wide neck today, a soft breeze away from falling off of one shoulder, and Yoongi squints at the skin he can see. Jimin feels like he should be embarrassed but Yoongi doesn’t seem phased.

“Just…” How do you explain that? “Dancers have...dancer collarbones?”

“Can I have an example?”

“I don’t know? They’re nice?” Jimin laughs. “They just, like, stick out.”

Yoongi’s fingers twitch, like he wants to reach out. “Yours do?”

Jimin straightens up from where he’s slouching and smooths his hands over his collarbones, feeling the divots. “Yeah, a little.”

Across the table, Yoongi leans forward. “Is that a mole?”

Jimin blinks. “What?”

Yoongi points, arm reaching, and his finger is just shy of touching his skin, a polite distance that still makes Jimin turn a little red. “A mole.”

“Ah.” Jimin runs his fingers over it. “Yeah. I have a few.”

Yoongi leans back in his chair. “Cute,” he says. He ducks his head again immediately, but Jimin thinks he might be blushing just a little.

Jimin grins. “Thanks.” He presses the heels of his hands against his knees and looks back at his study materials.

They sit there in happy silence for a while, and if Jimin weren’t constantly aware of every hot guy in his general vicinity, it would be easy to forget Yoongi was even there.

It’s Yoongi who breaks the silence. “Are you still embarrassed?”

Jimin sniffs. “I was never embarrassed.”

Yoongi looks at him pointedly.

“I wasn’t!” He was. Is. Maybe.

“Seokjin said--”

“Seokjin is dead to me,” Jimin pouts. “He’s supposed to take care of me.”

“Something tells me you can take care of yourself.”

Jimin thinks that’s a good thing, but he’s still reveling in Seokjin’s betrayal. “It’s a lot easier without people trying to sabotage you, I’ll tell you that.”

Yoongi snorts. “Noted.” He cocks his head to the side, glasses shifting on his nose. “You look deceptively soft, you know? Like a marshmallow.”

Jimin throws a pencil at him. “Speak for yourself, Mister Blanket Scarf.”

“It’s cold outside,” Yoongi says defensively. “And I’ve got resting bitch face. It helps me not look like a twelve-year-old.”

“If you’re looking for a fight, I’m going to have to ask you to take your glasses off. I don’t punch old women.” But he’s grinning, and their work is forgotten, and so is Jimin’s embarrassment.

“Are you going to yell at me again?” Yoongi is smiling, really smiling, and Jimin can see all of his teeth and he feels like he’s been blessed.

“I’ll yell at you if you deserve it,” Jimin says, voice even and heart rate skyrocketing.

“I’ll have to be careful, then.” Yoongi takes a quiet sip of his own coffee. “Gotta stay on your good side.”

“All my sides are good,” Jimin tells him primly, but it’s only a moment before he can’t keep the joke up and his shoulders slump as he laughs. “Even while yelling, I’m a blessing.”

“Um, yes.’ Yoongi is definitely blushing and Jimin is happy about it. “It was...something.”

“You said that.”

“I did.” He swallows, like he has something else he wants to say but can’t quite figure out the wording.

Jimin is more than willing to give Yoongi some time to think about what he’s going to say next. He sips his drink and goes back to reading dance composition theory.

It takes a minute, but Yoongi has disappointed him so far and he definitely doesn’t now. “How much of a bribe do I need for you to give me your number?”

Jimin looks up.

The blush that’s settled on Yoongi’s cheeks trickles down his neck. “I mean. Friends have their friends numbers, right?”

Jimin raises his eyebrows. “Are we friends?”

“That’s what the bribe is for.”

He laughs. “A solid method.”

“Tried and true.” Yoongi’s smile is gummy and cute and wow. Jimin sees why everyone has a crush on him.

He may be one of many people crushing on one Min Yoongi, but as far he knows, he’s the only one who Yoongi bought coffee for.

Probably the only one who’s yelled at him, too, but nobody is perfect.

“I’ll say that the coffee bought you my friendship,” he says after a second.

“For a $4 cup of coffee?” Yoongi sniffs. “Pretty cheap.”

“Fine.” Jimin rests his chin on his palm. “Let’s not be friends.”

“I think $4 is a perfectly acceptable price for friendship,” Yoongi amends quickly.

“What you don’t understand is that by being friends, you’re committing to buying me lots of coffee.” Jimin shrugs. “It all balances out.”

“Perfect.” Yoongi has completely shifted his focus from the computer to Jimin. “Now what do I have to give you to get your number?”

“Well, friend, what do you have to offer?”

“I’ll tell you embarrassing stories about Hoseok to use as blackmail the next time he fucks up.”

“Deal.”

He gets blackmail and Min Yoongi’s number. It’s a win-win.

Jimin and Yoongi go back to studying, and Jimin can’t stop smiling.

 


 

Hoseok and Taehyung don’t get back together immediately, nor should they.

Taehyung was happy when Hoseok showed up at their apartment, but he was angry too. Jimin is glad he wasn’t there, if the mess the living room was in is any indication. When Jimin got home after doing some errand, Taehyung was sitting sulkily on the couch and the apartment was in disarray.

“Jimin,” Taehyung had said firmly, foregoing any greeting. “Hoseok is an idiot.”

“Yep.”

“He’s lucky he’s fucking cute.”

Jimin had laughed. “You going to make him sweat it out?” he asked, putting his groceries away.

Taehyung grinned. “Yep.” His face fell a little bit. “He deserves it.”

Jimin wholeheartedly agreed.

But last night Taehyung finally made their relationship official again, and seeing the way they both look like they’re floating on air makes Jimin believe in love again, or some shit.

And Jimin knows what comes next.

They celebrate.

Jimin is no stranger to this club, and he’s feels just as at home here in his tight clothes and eye makeup as he does at home in his sweats. And this is arguably more fun.

Even if it’s just seeing Taehyung happy again.

“Jiminie!” Two steps into the building and Taehyung is already hanging off of him. “We are celebrating!”

“So I see.” Jimin laughs brightly.

“A toast!” Taehyung holds up the drink in his hand. “To monogamous dicking!”

“The best kind of dicking!” Jimin has to shout to be heard over the music.

“Hear hear!” And off Taehyung goes. He’s probably off to find Hoseok again and makeup in a corner. Jimin fully supports him.

He sees Yoongi sitting over at the bar. “Hey there, stranger,” he says, slipping onto a bar stool.

Yoongi doesn’t look surprised, holding a drink in both hands that’s only half empty. “Fancy seeing you here.”

“You weren’t at the last big celebration,” Jimin notes.

“I had a school thing,” Yoongi says plainly. The clothes he’s wearing aren’t very club-esque, save for the leather pants that Jimin knows for a fact he borrowed from Hoseok because he’s heard Taehyung wax poetic about those pants a million times. Jimin is inclined to agree. “Do you want a drink?”

“You only committed to buying me coffee,” Jimin teases. It’s been a good few days since they met in the library, and they’ve gone back to barely seeing each other outside of their shared class. They text occasionally. Yoongi has a cute habit of finding stray cats every time he goes outside and naming them cute things like Sugar and Bonnie and Munch, and he always sends a picture to Jimin and Jimin is always thankful. Tolkien is his favorite so far.

“I think our friendship is secure enough that we can extend it to alcohol.”

He isn’t really in the mood to get wasted tonight. “I think I’ll take a rain check on that.” Jimin looks and sees Hoseok and Taehyung in the crowd on the dance floor. “I’m probably going to have to drive Taehyung back anyway, unless they go home together.”

Yoongi sees the way Taehyung is moving his hips. “They’re probably going home together.”

“Well, we did toast to monogamous dicking as soon as I walked through the door,” Jimin says. “Taehyung doesn’t get drunk often, but when he does, he’s super horny.” Jimin laughs. “High school has some great stories.”

Yoongi is still watching them on the dance floor. Jimin sees his lips move but it’s too quiet under the music.

“What?”

Yoongi laughs. “I’m glad they’re together,” he repeats. “Hoseok is happier with him.”

“That’s the key, isn’t it?” Jimin smiles. “Happier together?”

He doesn’t hear Yoongi’s response, if he has one, but it doesn’t really matter, because clubs aren’t the best places to have drawn out conversations. “Do you want to dance?”

Yoongi blinks, surprised. “Ah.” He swallows. Jimin tracks the movement of Yoongi’s Adam’s apple with his eyes. “I’m not much of a dancer.”

“I’m a very good dancer.” I’ll make it worth your while. Jimin is really bad at this self-control thing, drunk or sober.

“I’ll hold down the fort,” Yoongi says, apologetically, and Jimin isn’t one to push.

“Maybe next time, then.” Jimin slides off the stool and makes his way into the crowd.

There’s something kind of terrible and wonderful about being so surrounded by people, a little claustrophobic and a little freeing and Jimin loves that feeling. Once the bass feels more like a sucker punch than a music component, Jimin forgets everything else except for his body and the one of the person closest to him.

Jimin wasn’t lying. He’s a very good dancer.

It’s not long before he feels someone’s hands on his hips, and he’s more than happy to play this game. Grinding isn’t exactly an artform, but Jimin always does his best to make it look like one. He likes the feeling of hands on him, he likes the feeling of the music, and he likes the feeling of people watching him.

Once he feels like the person he’s dancing with is getting a little attached, he flits off through the crowd, finding another pair of hands, another pair of hips, another partner, another song. It’s a good pastime.

He’s sweaty now, tired and exhilarated all at once, and just when he’s considering stopping, he sees a familiar face making his way through the crowd, bleached hair shining in the low light. “Hey there, stranger,” Yoongi says.

“Hey, yourself.” Jimin feels disheveled and a little gross but he doesn’t care. “How about that rain check?”

Yoongi was right when he said he wasn’t much of a dancer, but he has good rhythm, and the bass is thumpy, and once Yoongi stops jumping around nervously, they ease into something smooth.

Jimin has to physically put Yoongi’s hands on his hips, and he feels the way Yoongi is almost afraid to touch him, but Jimin doesn’t mind. He carries on, rolling to the music, moving, dancing, and he knows the exact moment that Yoongi makes up his mind, because the hands on his waist tighten and Yoongi takes a stop closer. Jimin grinds back. Yoongi grinds forward.

It’s good.

Jimin has had a lot of hands on him tonight, but he likes Yoongi’s the best. Yoongi’s thumbs rest on the sliver of skin right above his waistband, pressing into the divots of his hip bones, rubbing circles when the song slows down into something dirty. Jimin isn’t drunk, he knows exactly what he’s doing when he presses back a little more firmly, when he reaches a hand up to hold the back of Yoongi’s neck, when he lets his head roll back.

Yoongi’s grip tightens.

There’s shaky breathing in his ear. Jimin revels in it.

He’s going to regret this in the morning, when the heat of the moment fades and Jimin gets to feel the full force of how shameless he’s being. But right now, he just feels the way Yoongi’s hips stutter, he feels the way Yoongi is maybe just a little hard in his leather pants. Jimin runs his free hand up the side of Yoongi’s thigh, up up up until he can feel the curve of Yoongi’s ass.

Yoongi makes a sound, small and ragged, that’s carried away by the music so quickly that Jimin thinks he might have imagined it until he digs his fingers in and he hears it again.

Jimin hums, pleased, and he knows Yoongi hears it.

“I--” Yoongi sounds a little strangled.

“Told you I was a good dancer,” Jimin chirps, sweet tone at odds with the way his hips are circling.

“You didn’t learn this in class, did you?” His voice is breathy, and only partially because he’s tired.

Jimin hums again. “Nope, but practice makes perfect.”

He feels Yoongi’s hand trailing up slightly, brushing past the sensitive skin under Jimin’s belly button and grazing the muscle of Jimin’s abdomen.

Yoongi makes that sound again.

Jimin has never been more pleased.

“I should.” Yoongi clears his throat. His hips stop but Jimin’s keep going, and Yoongi doesn’t take his hands off, big palms sitting an inch or two from actually touching Jimin’s ass. Thumbs still pressed against his bare skin. Jimin can feel Yoongi’s eyes on him.

“I need to use the restroom.” It’s a little sudden.

“Okay?” But by the time Jimin turns to look at him face to face, Yoongi has bolted towards the bathroom.

Taehyung is probably the only one getting laid tonight.

Jimin isn’t surprised, but he won’t say he wasn’t a little hopeful.

He pouts.

The song changes.

Jimin doesn’t see Yoongi for the rest of the night.

 


 

There’s very little worse than waking up, stone cold sober, remembering every embarrassing thing you’ve ever done.

Jimin kind of wishes he had gotten drunk. At least that would have been a good excuse.

But who knows what would have happened then.

He’s had a good, long, empty weekend to reminisce about his poor behavior at the club. A whole weekend to think about the fact that Yoongi has not sent him a single picture of his stray cats. 48 hours to remember the sounds Yoongi made and the way Jimin had been the one to prompt them.

That last one was okay.

The others made Jimin want to curl up in a ball forever.

It’s fine.

And maybe Jimin really, really likes him, even though Yoongi is out of his league and has plenty of suitors and has probably seen Jimin’s worse side.

Jimin really liked the way Yoongi’s hands felt on him, and he really likes the way Yoongi sends him stupid text messages, and those things combined make Jimin think that he probably needs to avoid Yoongi for the rest of his life lest the crush become too powerful and overtake him completely.

Honestly, Jimin doesn’t think he’s going to have to try very hard. He’d be surprised if Yoongi felt comfortable around him after the club. He knows Yoongi isn’t super outgoing, knows he doesn’t like crowds, knows he didn’t even really want to dance. He doesn’t know why Yoongi ended up coming out anyway, but he does know that Yoongi left very suddenly and disappeared.

Jimin’s first thought is that this is what Taehyung must have felt like when Hoseok just stopped talking to him. But it’s different. Because Yoongi and Jimin definitely aren’t dating or even anywhere close to that.

It’s just a crush.

It’s time for Jimin to crush it.

Push it down and sweep it aside and forget it exists. He refuses to make more of an embarrassment out of himself.

They can be friends. Friends get embarrassed with no repercussions all the time. Look at Taehyung. Living proof.

Once Jimin stamps this down, they can be friends.

Maybe.

Yoongi might not even want to talk to him.

How awkward is it to grind up against your friends? He and Taehyung have done it, but it was different. Mostly because Taehyung didn’t get a boner and Jimin didn’t have a problem not thinking about it.

But it’s fine. It’s going to be fine. So when Taehyung sees him deep and thought and asks him what’s wrong, he just says, “I think I might have ruined my latest free coffee supplier,” and moves on.

He is kind of dreading going to that class, because it’s not like they’ve ever talked in that class before, but they’ve graduated to some nice waving and a second or two of eye contact, and maybe a couple of random text messages throughout the lecture, and Jimin just isn’t looking forward to that not being there.

But he still runs there after modern, sweaty and tired and windswept and reluctant, still slides into the classroom until Professor Park’s disapproving eye, and walks with his head down to his seat.

Or.

What was his seat.

Because Seokjin is sitting in that far corner now, laptop already open to his favorite shopping site, and there’s an empty chair where Seokjin usually sits, and then there is Yoongi.

“Jimin!” Seokjin calls.

Yoongi jerks a little bit, pulled out of his own world, and looks up at Jimin, who’s standing over him, staring, dazed and confused, because Yoongi has moved seats a good month and a half into the semester.

“Hey.” Yoongi’s voice sounds different now than it did before. Not breathy, a little unsure, and a lot hopeful.

“Hey, yourself.”

“Park Jimin?”

Jimin’s eyes tear away from Yoongi to look at the professor. “Yes, sir?”

“Please sit down. You’re disrupting the class.”

He’s too dazed to be salty about it. “Oh.” He slides into his new seat, pushing his backpack under the table after pulling out his notebook.

Yoongi’s arm brushes against his.

There’s absolutely no reason for Yoongi to move seats at this point. He’s friends with Seokjin, but he’s always been friends with Seokjin, and he’s not even sitting beside him.

He’s sitting beside Jimin.

He moved to sit beside Jimin.

Jimin’s phone buzzes and it’s not Yoongi.

Seokjinnie, the Betrayer
Cute asshole alert on your right
You’re fucking welcome

His phone buzzes again, and it’s a picture of Tolkien the cat.

Maybe he’s not hopeless.

 


 

“He likes you.”

Jimin is trying to decide what to watch on Netflix. “Yeah. I think so too.”

Taehyung looks up at him from where his head is settled in Jimin’s lap. “You know?”

“He’s…” Jimin smiles fondly. “He’s not subtle.”

The other day Yoongi brought him coffee and then walked him to class. He asked for tickets to see the spring show even though he could have easily gotten them from Hoseok. He calls Jimin sometimes after work and they talk until they can’t anymore.

Jimin catches Yoongi staring at him all the time.

It’s cute.

“I feel like you guys are either going to start making out randomly on the couch or like, go for a long walk on the beach every time you get together.” Taehyung takes the remote from Jimin and starts surfing through their options. “It’s sickening.”

“Oh, like you and Hoseok were ever any better.”

“Hoseok and I are the best.”

“Do you think if we told Yoongi that, he’d take it as a challenge and finally ask me out?” He tries to imitate Yoongi’s voice but he can’t get low enough. “ Gotta prove that we’re the best, let’s go Jimin.

Taehyung wrinkles his nose. “That was awful.” He looks at the television. “Let’s watch Gilmore Girls.


It’s frustrating to know exactly where you stand with a person and know exactly what needs to be done to get to where you want to be and see it continually not happen.

Yoongi is everything Jimin ever wanted him to be and more, because he’s not just a crush, he’s also a real person. And every knew thing that Jimin finds out just makes him crush a little harder.

And he knows that Yoongi is crushing, too.

People on campus are even gossiping about it. He’s had at least three of his friends ask him about his thing with Yoongi. Every time he walks past a group of girls he hears them chattering.

The campus ships it.

So does Jimin.

He just needs Yoongi to ask.

It’s not a huge commitment even, because just because they go on a date doesn’t meaning they’re dating, and Jimin really wants to go on a date. He thinks it would work. He thinks a date with Min Yoongi would be awesome. He thinks the feeling is mutual.

But Yoongi just.

Won’t ask.

Jimin sees him trying to work up the nerve sometimes. When they’re studying together, Yoongi will say his name and stare at him for a second, mouth opening once before clicking shut and muttering nevermind and going back to working on music stuff. Sometimes, right before they’re about to part ways before a class, Yoongi will take a deep breath, and Jimin can practically hear the words, before Yoongi says goodbye and races off with little ceremony. Jimin always pouts his hardest, but it doesn’t matter if Yoongi is too nervous to even look at him.

If the pout fails him, what does Jimin have left?

He could always ask himself, but there’s something about that that doesn’t feel right. Jimin is a forward person, knows how to get what he wants, but Yoongi is almost skittish, and he doesn’t want to press even if he knows what Yoongi’s answer will be.

Besides.

Yoongi has literally been trying to ask for like, three weeks.

It seems rude to steal his thunder.

So Jimin will wait.

At least another week.

Honestly, it’s endearing, the way Yoongi will turn bright red and change the subject to something easier. It’s cute, the way Yoongi will stare at Jimin’s collarbones when he wears a wide-necked shirt. It’s adorable, the way Yoongi stutters every time Jimin says something even slightly suggestive.

If Jimin wears tighter pants than usual, well, he can’t be blamed for wanted to hurry things along.

“So.”

They’re at Yoongi’s apartment, sitting facing each other on the couch, legs tangled together while some action movie plays in the background.

Jimin looks up from the book he’s reading. “So.”

Yoongi opens his mouth.

Here we go.

“The weather.”

Jimin squints. “The weather?”

“Yep.” Yoongi pops the p.

“It’s…” Jimin wants to laugh. “Nice?”

“Yeah, I’d agree.”

“Why are we talking about the weather?”

Yoongi looks like he’s wondering that, too. Jimin wants to coo at how red he’s turning. “I…”

He needs some help, and Jimin is always happy to provide. “I hear the weather is going to be nice this weekend.”

Yoongi blinks. “Um. Yes.” He opens his mouth again. Shuts it.

“Just ask.”

“What?”

Jimin snorts, shutting his book. “Just ask. I’m going to say yes.”

Yoongi takes a deep breath. “Oh.”

“Ask and you shall receive.”

“I get it. Just give me a second.” Yoongi bites his lips. “Two seconds maybe.”

“I’ll wait a whole minute for you.” Jimin smiles.

“So generous.”

Jimin shoots him a kiss and Yoongi kicks him a little. “How many seconds has it been?”

“At least two. But it’s not been a minute yet.”

Yoongi frowns. “Why is this so hard?”

“I’m very intimidating.” He says it as a joke, so he’s surprised when Yoongi starts nodding.

“I swear, when you were dragging Hoseok to Hell and back.” Yoongi whistles.

It’s Jimin’s turn to blush. “What a terrible first impression.”

Yoongi stares at him. “Are you kidding? It was so hot.”

Jimin chokes on his tongue.

“I thought it was going to be funny but I couldn’t stop staring,” Yoongi continues, almost babbling, and Jimin coughs, trying to catch his breath. “Was that too much?” Yeongi looks worried. “Whoops.”

“No, I just.” Jimin fans his face with his hand and blinks to get the tears out of his eyes. “I was just surprised.” He laughs, running a hand down his face. “Is that what you like?”

Yoongi’s face goes carefully blank. “What.”

“Do you like it when people take control?” Jimin has the biggest shit-eating grin on his face and he knows it. It’s worth the way Yoongi swallows thickly. “You want me to put you in your place?”

“No.” Yoongi coughs into his fist and Jimin knows he’s lying. “I just.”

“Just what?”

“I just want a date.”

There it is.

Jimin settles back against the arm of the couch. “Okay.” Yoongi’s leg is warm against his own.

“Okay.” Yoongi lets out the breath he was holding. He smiles. “I hear the weather is going to be nice this weekend.”

Jimin beams. “It’s a date.” He opens his book again, and this time he doesn’t stamp down the butterflies.

 


 

“For the record,” Jimin says. “I don’t see why I couldn’t put you in your place and go on a date with you.”

Yoongi looks up at him. “We’ll talk later.”

 


 

“Do you want to come inside?”

It was a good date. It’s warm enough for a light jacket and Jimin was right, the weather is beautiful this weekend. He’d let Yoongi lead him around, held his hand, kept Yoongi from talking himself in circles every time Jimin took a couple of steps closer. He likes the way Yoongi can’t look at him for more than two seconds without blushing. He likes the way Yoongi’s hair looks when it’s ruffled by the wind.

He likes the way Yoongi sounds when he talks and he likes the way Yoongi can’t talk when Jimin gets too close.

A good date.

Jimin likes Yoongi.

And thus.

Do you want to come inside?

It means whatever Yoongi wants it to mean.

Yoongi looks surprised. “Is…” He swallows. “Is Taehyung here?”

Jimin shrugs. “If he is we can kick him out.” He tilts his head. He made sure to style his hair perfectly, his cheeks are a little pink from the light chill, and he knows that he’s exactly what Yoongi wants. “Or not. We can just talk.”

Yoongi laughs. “We’ve been talking all night.”

“Tired of me already?” Jimin asks, leaning back against the door to his apartment building.

Suddenly, Yoongi is very close, just close enough, and Jimin grins when he sees the way the other boy’s eyes flicker from his eyes to lips and back up again. Jimin slips a finger through Yoongi’s belt loop.

The door shifts behind him and Jimin jerks in surprise, clinging onto Yoongi’s arm. He feels Yoongi’s breath on his face as he laughs. His hand has snuck to the unlocked door when Jimin wasn’t looking, keys still in the lock. “Lead the way,” Yoongi says smugly.

Jimin laughs, pulling Yoongi inside by the collar.

Taehyung isn’t home. There’s a sticky note on the microwave saying that Taehyung knows Jimin too well and he made plans with Hoseok as soon as he found out Yoongi finally got his shit together. Jimin is grateful. He crumples the note up and throws it away before digging in the cupboards. “Hot chocolate?”

“Coffee?” Yoongi asks instead, slipping into the kitchen behind him.

“Picky picky,” Jimin says, tutting, looking over his shoulder with a smirk. “Who wants to kiss with coffee breath?”

Yoongi steps in beside him as he pulls down the mugs. “I thought you said we were just talking.”

“I said we could just talk. If you wanted to.” Jimin leans into Yoongi’s space as he sets the mugs down on the counter. “Is that what you want, Yoongi? You just want to talk?”

He sees that way Yoongi’s eyes go to his lips again and can’t help but be pleased. “And do I always get what I want?” he asks after a moment of staring.

“I guess that depends on whether or not I want to give it to you,” Jimin answers cheekily. He pauses. “But you are a guest. And my mother always taught me to be a good host.”

Yoongi is smiling when he slips his finger in Jimin’s belt loop and pulls him closer. “Remind me to thank your mother.”

Jimin laughs. “Never talk about my mother before you kiss me ever again.”

And then Yoongi closes the distance.

They don’t waste any time, really. Jimin’s always known exactly what he wants, and he wants his hands in Yoongi’s hair and Yoongi’s hands on his hips again. And that’s what he gets. Yoongi seems more sure of himself in the harsh light of the kitchen than he did at the club, his hands firm, and Yoongi seems to know what he wants, too.

What Yoongi wants is his hands all over Jimin and their mouths together and Jimin is more than happy with this arrangement. Yoongi presses forward, pushing Jimin back into the counter as their lips slide together, big hands smoothing over the fabric of Jimin’s sweater, down down, and then under, and then up, and when Jimin feels Yoongi’s long fingers stroking the skin right under his ribs, he hums happily against Yoongi’s mouth.

There is a lot happening all at once, hands and mouths and bodies, and Yoongi bites gently against Jimin’s lower lip like he knows what he’s doing. Jimin sighs against him, fingers scratching at the short hairs at the base of Yoongi’s neck while his free hand slides down to slip into the back pocket of Yoongi’s too-tight jeans.

Yoongi makes that sound again, the small, ragged sound, and Jimin can hear it so clearly in the silence of the empty apartment. Yoongi’s teeth bite down a little more harshly when Jimin grabs firmly and Jimin makes a small, ragged sound of his own.

Jimin slides his leg between Yoongi’s, pulls him even closer, drinks in Yoongi’s surprised noise with a grin before carefully, carefully, coaxing Yoongi’s mouth open.

He tastes like cherry lip balm and the lamb skewers they’d bought from the street vendor for dinner, and it’s good, because it’s Yoongi.

And then Yoongi whines , just when Jimin thought that small, ragged sound was the best sound he’d ever hear, and it’s almost involuntary, the way Jimin drags Yoongi’s hips closer. Yoongi’s hands press more firmly against his ribs, slip forward to press against the indents of his abs, slip down, fingers dipping under the waistband of Jimin’s jeans.

Yoongi’s phone rings.

Under normal circumstances Jimin would fully support ignoring it because he’s got Yoongi right where he wants him, but once the tune registers in his brain, Jimin can’t help but pull away. “Is that Girl’s Generation?”

Yoongi laughs, embarrassed, ducking his head to hide it in the crook of Jimin’s neck. “Better or worse than The Notebook ?”

Jimin grimaces. “Better.”

The phone stops ringing, and Yoongi starts paying lots of attention to Jimin’s neck, kissing his way up to where neck meets jaw, laving at the sensitive skin there, which is plenty distracting and very welcome, but the phone starts ringing again and Yoongi sighs heavily, slumping against Jimin’s shoulder.

With a laugh, Jimin pats his back comfortingly. “You should answer that.”

“I don’t want to,” Yoongi whines, muffled.

“If you don’t, I will, and I’ll be very direct.”

With a grimace, Yoongi answers the phone. “Hello?” His eyebrows knit together. “Yeah? I’m...” His eyes flicker to Jimin. “Yeah, I’m...I’m at his house right now.” If he weren’t already flushed, Jimin thinks Yoongi would turn red immediately. As it stands, Yoongi just looks like he’s about to explode on the spot.

He also looks like he just made out with someone who knew what they were doing. Jimin thinks it’s a good look.

“Jungkook, please stop asking me...listen…” Yoongi groans. “Tonight?”

“Cockblock,” Jimin says loudly towards the receiver.

Yoongi tries not to laugh. “Yeah, yeah, I know I promised, but you don’t have to be a shit about it.”

Clearly, Jungkook still feels the need to be a shit.

“Fine.” Yoongi hangs up. One of his hands is still on Jimin’s hip, thumb on bare skin in a way that makes Jimin wish he could ask Yoongi to stay the night. “I need to go. I lost a bet and now Jungkook is going to ruin my life.”

“I hope this is a one time thing,” Jimin says simply, smoothing down the top of Yoongi’s hair where Jimin’s hands have pulled it into disarray. “I don’t like being left behind.”

“If you like doing a freshman’s music theory homework, feel free to come along.”

Jimin frowns. “Hard pass.”

Yoongi snorts. “More fun for me.” In the space where he should be saying goodbye and making his way to the door, he hesitates. “Next time, I won’t leave.”

“I’ll make the coffee.”

For a moment, Yoongi just grins at him, dopey and lame and Jimin likes this Yoongi just as much as he likes the one with the firm hands and the ragged noises.

“It’s a date.” And then Yoongi leans in and kisses Jimin chastely on the lips, a peck, nothing more, and he’s gone.

When Taehyung gets home, Jimin is still smiling.

 




Jimin hates graduations.

There’s something really sad about the idea of everyone leaving, even though the idea of starting a new phase in life makes the whole room buzz with uneasy excitement. They’re always too long and the room is always too hot and Jimin would rather be watching television in his pajamas but he doesn’t always get what he wants.

He gets a degree, though.

His mom bursts into tears when he walks across the platform, hideous graduation robe thrown on over a dress shirt he had to borrow and a smile plastered on his face because his grandma will kill him if he ruins her pictures.

Despite his dislike of graduations, there is something really satisfying about having the diploma in his hands, the cumulation of four years turned into something physical he can hang on his wall, like an ugly, really expensive piece of art.

He’s happy.

“We did it!” Taehyung screams at him, running to him as soon as he sees him in the crowd after the ceremony. He’s lost his hat somewhere and his blond hair looks out of place amongst all the black, but it’s bright and it fits. “We graduated!”

“Finally!” He jumps into Taehyung’s arms, laughing as his best friend spins him around. “The only thing that would make me happier is if someone brought me flowers and my favorite candy,” he says pointedly once his feet are on the ground again.

“Hmm, I wonder who would do that for you,” Yoongi says behind them, and Jimin makes a sound somewhere between a laugh and a shout and jumps for his boyfriend.

“If you have sweets, I need them immediately.”

“So bossy,” Yoongi tsks, and he looks good, hair black again and dressed in a white button-down that Jimin bought him for his birthday. He’s holding flowers and a bag of gummy everything and Jimin loves him.

“Hoseokkie!” Taehyung screeches, and Hoseok screeches from the other side of the room, and Jimin ignores them because he knows they’re going to be running for each other.

“They’re gross,” Yoongi says, watching the other couple over Jimin’s shoulder.

“We’re grosser,” Jimin replies, kissing Yoongi’s nose. “How does it feel, having a boyfriend who’s no longer in college?”

“Not too different,” Yoongi tells him.

“How does it feel having a boyfriend who is going to live with you and probably suck your dick daily?”

Yoongi thinks. “Still not too different.” He grins. “Now you’re just paying rent.”

“I paid my dues in sexual favors.”

“Pretty sure you were getting sexual favors of your own.” Yoongi laughs. “I’ll buy you dinner, though. No dick sucking required.”

With a smile, Jimin tucks himself against his boyfriend’s side. “Sounds like a plan.”

Jimin hates graduations and he really likes Yoongi.

“Let’s go home.”

He’s really, really happy.